Thanks to the team at ‘The Novel Approach‘ for allowing me to guest blog at their site. Below is what I wrote about writing both novels, and some reviewers’ fascination with my Angel character.
Sometime over ten years ago I decided to write a novel. In my early years I loved writing stories but gave away this early passion during puberty. For some reason as a thirty-something, I decided to put pen to paper and write again.
I had a plot where characters in the Afterlife found themselves in the theatre district, rehearsing plays which highlighted each actor’s unfinished business. They’d finally need to face the life lessons they avoided, here in the hereafter.
But thankfully that idea was lost as I began to write. A lot happened during the many years, and during the many drafts, that first novel took shape. But the best thing to happen, happened early in its life. I was put in touch with an assessor.
Over three more drafts she helped shape the manuscript, and through many more drafts, I expanded the lesser elements of the story, giving them new life. I was on a mission to be published, and to cut a long story short, I finally was offered a contract, but only after many rejection letters.
There’s a lot of time between signing a contract and finally seeing your book in print. So, while I waited, I started working on the sequel.
As reviews began to be published through various blogs and book sites, one reoccurring opinion about Drama Queens with Love Scenes was that everyone had fallen in love with my angel character, Guy. This took me by surprise. My assessor’s favorite character was Maudi, the late 19th century thespian. I was advised on expanding the world of this individual. There were a few suggestions for my angel guide, but both my assessor and I felt he was just one of the ‘gang’ in this story. Maudi was the main co-star.
Not so according to many others. A friend of mine described Guy as the silent but strong companion who keeps you on the straight and narrow, without judgment. Yet, he himself never knew his parents and has his own insecurities to contend with – including the fact that he doesn’t know how to fly. The perfect friend to have looking after your interests, and to care for as he deals with his own issues.
Bloggers have mentioned that they’ve put in their own request for Guy as their guardian angel. Others described him as the emotional centre of the story. Some even wanted the romance in the novel to be between Guy and the main character, Allan, and not between Allan and Warwick.
Thankfully, Guy was a main component of the sequel, but like any writer reading his reviews, I took on board what was being said. I expanded his role, giving insight to my new protagonist’s relationship to the famed character through childhood and later adult years.
So now over three books in the Actors and Angels series, including one that has won a Rainbow Award, theatrical drama-queens deal with unrequited passion, artistically-questionable plays, the mysticism of the Afterlife, and a loveable self-doubting angel named Guy.